Campus News Georgia Impact

State’s commissioner of public health to discuss adult, childhood obesity

Brenda Fitzgerald
Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald is the Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health and State Health Officer. 

Brenda Fitzgerald, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health and state health officer, will visit campus July 31 to provide an update on adult and child obesity in Georgia and to discuss current local and state initiatives to address the epidemic. Her presentation, “A State Perspective on Obesity,” will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. in Room 175 of the Paul D. Coverdell Center for Biomedical and Health Sciences. 

The presentation is sponsored by the UGA Obesity Initiative, launched in January to harness diverse and extensive obesity-related instruction, research activities and public service and outreach components to address the growing epidemic of childhood and adult obesity—as well as the increasing incidence of overweight infants—in Georgia. The initiative is developing obesity prevention and treatment programs that interested Georgia communities, employers and health care providers can implement. It is under the direction of Clifton Baile, GRA Eminent Scholar and D.W. Brooks Distinguished Professor, departments of animal and dairy science and foods and nutrition.

Fitzgerald, a board-certified obstetrician-gynecologist and a Fellow in anti-aging medicine, has practiced medicine for three decades. As commissioner, she oversees various state public health programs including health promotion and disease prevention, maternal and child health, infectious disease and immunization, environmental health, epidemiology, emergency preparedness and response, emergency medical services, pharmacy, nursing, volunteer health care, the Office of Health Equity, vital records and the State Public Health Laboratory. Fitzgerald also directs the state’s 18 public health districts and 159 county health departments.